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Degree Programs and Modules on Offer

The SML offers Bachelor's and Master's degree programs that are scientifically sound, interdisciplinary, and characterized by a high level of practical orientation.

The ZHAW School of Management and Law (SML) offers internationally recognized Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programs and a broad range of continuing education courses and programs. Our students benefit from the tradition of excellence for which Swiss education is renowned as well as from a global outlook that is reflected in all our activities. In 2015, the School of Management and Law became the first business school of a Swiss university of applied sciences to be accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

As an incoming exchange student, you can choose from among a wide range of modules in our Bachelor’s degree programs in Business Administration (various specializations), International Management, Business Information Technology, and Business Law. In addition, the SML also has a number of consecutive Master’s degree programs that focus on a specific specialization but also offer interdisciplinary modules.

Program in English

To meet the needs of Swiss students wanting to prepare for a career in international business, the SML offers an increasing range of modules taught in English as part of its regular Bachelor’s and Master’s curriculum. Currently, some 100 modules taught in English are available during the academic year. These modules are ideal for incoming students, who can study alongside their Swiss peers. Content-wise, there is no difference between modules taught in English or German. Incoming students whose language skills meet the requirements are welcome to choose modules offered in either German or English, or a combination of both.  

Module Registration and Class Schedule

During the application process, all incoming students will be able to choose their preferred modules for the semester by filling in the “Study Proposal” form. This pre-registration process enables the SML to analyze the demand for individual modules and plan class sizes accordingly. You can assemble your individual class schedule from the full range of modules on offer, but the actual signing up will take place during Orientation Week. The International Office will help you to adjust your class schedule in case of a time conflict or if you have to substitute a module for whatever reason.

Orientation Week and Classes

As an incoming student, you will be expected to arrive one week before classes start in order to attend a mandatory week of orientation. The exact starting dates can be found in the academic calendar. During Orientation Week, you will be welcomed by everyone in the International Team, taken on a tour of the campus, and be provided with everything you need to know about your upcoming exchange semester (e.g., travelling around in Switzerland, the Swiss health insurance system, our IT infrastructure, and much more). In addition, there will be plenty of opportunity to meet and get to know the other exchange students during a joint lunch at a local restaurant, a get-together bar night, and fun ice breaker games. A voluntary four-day Basic German Taster Course will be open to anyone interested in learning some basic German (worth 2 ECTS credits).

During your semester abroad, you will have 14 weeks of classes. A lesson lasts 45 minutes, with one module usually consisting of 2-4 weekly lessons. Depending on the workload required, each module is worth 3 or 6 ECTS credits. Types of modules include core modules, electives, and modules specifically designed for incoming students. In general, transcripts, case studies, and other materials are provided on our online learning platform Moodle. Textbooks can be ordered directly or in many cases borrowed from the university library.

Academic Workload, Grading System, and Transcript of Records

The credit system used at the SML is based on the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). The workload of a full-time student at the SML equals 30 ECTS credits per semester, with one credit requiring 25-30 hours of study. The number of credits an incoming student must acquire is determined by his or her home university. However, the SML expects all incoming students to earn between 15 (min.) and 45 (max.) ECTS credits during their exchange semester.

Like most Swiss universities, the SML uses a grading scale ranging from 1.0 to 6.0. The pass grade is 4.0, and the maximum achievable grade is 6.0. In order to help your home university to transfer your credits, an additional ECTS grade between A to F is also awarded.

At the end of the semester, the International Office will prepare an official transcript of records for each student, documenting:

  • all modules taken, including the language of instruction;
  • the number of ECTS credits (possible and awarded);
  • the grade awarded by the SML; and
  • the ECTS grade.